Are you looking for romance this Valentine’s Day? Then you may want to move to Spain. Research by author Chrisanna Northrup revealed that the land of flamenco and paella is the most romantic country in the world. Where does the USA stand in matters of all things romantic? Not so good.
Here’s a quick comparison:
- 77 percent of Spanish couples say the cuddle several times a week, while only 17 percent of American couples do so.
- 72 percent of couples in Spain kiss passionately several times per week while in America the same holds true for a mere 20 percent.
- In Spain, 62 percent of couples display PDA several times a week but only 18 percent of American couples enjoy sharing affection publicly as often.
So, what gives? Maybe it’s the Latin in all those Latin lovers. Maybe it’s the sherry. Maybe it’s the simple love of life and all things joyful. Maybe Americans are just too uptight and tightly wound.
Whatever the case, it seems that our ability to keep the spirit of Valentine’s Day going for the other 364 days in a year is weak. One surprising finding Northrup found while researching her book “The Normal Bar” is that by simply calling each other pet names goes a long way. In addition, character is more important the physical chemistry and those who feel they have a lot in common with their spouse or significant other are happier. So are those who give and receive back rubs. Yep, back rubs. A whopping 74 percent of the happiest couples surveyed regularly give or receive back rubs. I’m down for that!
Vacations and dates are also important but sadly only 44 percent of American couples hardly ever or even never go on a date and a miserable 75 percent of us never take a romantic vacation. Perhaps most alarming is the fact that the richest couples surveyed were less likely to be happy than those with less money. Couples earning $20,000 a year or less argue less frequently than those who earn between $250,000 to $500,000. I guess money really can’t buy happiness. But we already knew that, right?
So it’s wash board abs and Victoria Secret model bodies we all want in our partners, right? Wrong! Smart USA reports that seven of 10 Americans would actually prefer their spouse speak another language than look like a model and three in five would rather their partner gain 20 IQ points then lose 20 pounds.
Where are many of these couples meeting? On-line! In fact, the University of Chicago reports that 35 percent of couples who got married in the past seven years met online. Wow!
What would St. Valentine think? The third century Roman priest is the reason we celebrate the annual February day of love. After being thrown in jail by the Emperor who wanted all men to be in the army and not get married, which Valentine disagreed with, Valentine would send letters and sign them, Love Valentine. Valentine strongly believed people needed to get married and was eventually killed on February 14, 269.
So as you hug your valentine today, think of loving St. Valentine, all those romantic couples in Spain and dream away. I’ll be joining you.
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!